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Re: text equivalent for words in a video?

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From: Moore, Michael
Date: Sep 23, 2008 3:00PM


Keith wrote:

A couple of specific follow-ups...

On Sep 23, 2008, at 11:14 AM, Moore, Michael wrote:

> Audio description as a separate audio track would meet the needs of
> blind users.

Is this necessary to meet 508? Or going beyond the letter of the law,
to actually meet the needs of blind users?

Mike:

The specific 508 Standards are these:

§ 1194.22 Web-based intranet and internet information and applications.

(a) A text equivalent for every non-text element shall be provided (e.g., via "alt", "longdesc", or in element content).

(b) Equivalent alternatives for any multimedia presentation shall be synchronized with the presentation.

Item (b) would seem to suggest that if necessary to understand the content, then audio description would be required. How else could it be synchronized.

The issue in the video that you have described is whether it is really conveying any information that is important. Words moving across a screen with sound effects may actually qualify as purely decorative. I would need to actually see the animation in the context of the page to render a qualified judgment.

Of course this section will apply if you determine that the video is serving an informational rather than decorative purpose.:

§ 1194.24 Video and multimedia products.

(c) All training and informational video and multimedia productions which support the agency's mission, regardless of format, that contain speech or other audio information necessary for the comprehension of the content, shall be open or closed captioned.

(d) All training and informational video and multimedia productions which support the agency's mission, regardless of format, that contain visual information necessary for the comprehension of the content, shall be audio described.

I do not believe that simply because a video or multimedia presentation is embedded in a web page it is excluded from the requirement.

And finally the functional performance criteria:

§ 1194.31 Functional performance criteria.

(a) At least one mode of operation and information retrieval that does not require user vision shall be provided, or support for assistive technology used by people who are blind or visually impaired shall be provided.

(b) At least one mode of operation and information retrieval that does not require visual acuity greater than 20/70 shall be provided in audio and enlarged print output working together or independently, or support for assistive technology used by people who are visually impaired shall be provided.

(c) At least one mode of operation and information retrieval that does not require user hearing shall be provided, or support for assistive technology used by people who are deaf or hard of hearing shall be provided.

The functional performance criteria could be met with a transcript.

Keith:

Normally one would only be required to create equivalent content in
text. I assume, as with other text, the assistive technology takes
care of turning the text into a form the blind user can access (speech
or braille).

> A transcript that included descriptions of what is
> happening in the video for people who are deaf/blind.

Is there a preferred way to provide a link to a transcript, other than
a simple on-screen text link?

Mike:

That would be my preferred method, it's easy to implement, find and use.

Regards,

Mike